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METAL TOP CLARET JUGS

The claret jugs I am showing here come in very different styles and the tops with different types of metal. This includes, pewter, silver plate on copper, silver plate on nickel, and sterling silver. The metal used pretty much defines the quality of the jugs.

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Claret Jugs

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Description, References and Size

This is a flask shaped brown Victorian claret jug with an applied handle. The handle is plain and applied bottom to top. It has a silver plate collar and pourer and the stopper is cork and Sheffield plate with a simple ring to pull it out. Made c.1860

This is a simple flask jug made in the style of wine bottles that were imported from Germany. Apparently there was a fashion for keeping and converting such bottles into claret jugs (German wine bottles must have been considered exotic). This example was clearly never just a wine bottle as it is too finely made and fragile.

In the second reference I have given here I don't believe the attribution is correct, but I have included it to show that older books are not always accurate.

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 347

Reference: Hallmarks of Antique Glass, R. Wilkinson, page 127

Height: 9 inches

Width: 5 inches

This is a flask shaped green Victorian claret jug with an applied handle. The handle is plain and applied bottom to top. It has a pewter collar and the stopper is cork and Sheffield plate with a ball on top. Made c.1860

In the world of glass collectors brown and amber glass is much less desirable and green, and blue is more desirable than green, and others colours like red, amethyst, teal are more desible than blue. Sadly the colours I have are near the bottom of the pile. I must say though, the rather flashy collar/pouring lip on my brown bottle does bring it somewhat and I prefer it to this green one. Accessories also make a difference to desirability.

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 347

Reference: Hallmarks of Antique Glass, R. Wilkinson, page 127

Height: 8.5 inches

Width: 5 inches

This is a flask shaped Victorian claret jug with horizontal ellipses closely cut over the whole body apart from a demarked area near the applied handle. The handle is plain and applied bottom to top. It has a silver plate rim collar with a hinged lid, marked H&H for Hulkin and Heath. Made c.1880-90

This is a super quality claret jug made by the famous makers Hukin and Heath. I have never seen another jug like this and the planished look of the cutting reminds me of silver work designed by Dr. Christopher Dresser. I don't know if this is one of his designed, but I would expect he wasn't standing far away when it was.

The little horizontal ellipses are known as olives to glass cutters. I haven't used that in the description as I suspect even most glass nerds have heard of it.

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 456

Height: 9 inches

Width: 5 inches

This is a Victorian claret jug with a quilted moulded body. It has a silver plate collar with incorporated handle, pouring lip and a hinged flip-top lid. It is mark H&H for Hukin and Heath. Made c.1880-90

This is a quality claret jug made by the famous makers Hukin and Heath. Plenty of jugs in this style exist with all kinds of finishes, for totally plain to cut all over. The design of these claret jugs are usually attributed to Dr. Christopher Dresser.

The really neat thing about this that shows the quality is that where the bottom of the handle touches the glass body, the metal of the handle has been shaved to match the undulations on the glass and let it sit flush on the uneven surface.

Christopher Dresser is often regarded as the 'father of industrial design'. He designed utilitarian objects for the general public while making full use of the latest techniques of mass production. Dresser's most innovative designs were for objects to be made in metal. His designs for ceramics and glass often resemble plant forms in their shape, ornamentation or colouring, but his designs for metalwork objects tend to be fully abstract. He frequently employed symmetrical, rectilinear shapes and undecorated surfaces. This was partly due to the intrinsic value of silver and gold, which he specified should be used economically in order to make the object affordable. This is in keeping with his ethical attitude towards economy in design.

Reference: Dresser People's Designer, Harry Lyons, M-038

Height: 8 inches

Width: 4.5 inches

This is a Victorian claret jug with a long wide neck, diamond shaped body. It has a silver plate fittings incorporating a bar handle, pouring lip and a hinged flip-top lid. It is mark H&H for Hulkin and Heath. Made c.1882-3

This is a quality claret jug made by Hukin and Heath. Christopher Dresser made a number of variations of this type of jug. This particular one is well referenced. It is more normal for the bar handle to be a dowel of ebonised wood, but in this case, it is a silver plate bar.

What is nice about this is that the design date of 1882-3 is so out of step with other work being produced at the time and this is what makes Dresser so great. He steps out of his time period innovates and it still looks good all this time later.

Reference: Dresser, Harry Lyons, M-036

Reference: Christopher Dresser, Michael Whiteway, page 99

Reference: Christie's Catalogue 19th Oct 2004, The Harry Lyons Collection, Lot.353

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 419

Height: 8.5 inches

Width: 5.5 inches

This is a Victorian claret Jug with a long wide neck, and flattened donut shaped base. It has sterling silver fittings incorporating a looped handle, domed pouring lip and a hinged flip-top lid. It has silver marks for the maker Jehoiada Alsop Rhodes & Barber in Sheffield 1883.

There is a reasonable chance that is claret jug is not a Christopher Dresser design. My references contain no mention of him doing any work for this silversmith company. The glass body is very like one of the designs Christopher Dresser created, and whilst the silverware is reminiscent of Christopher Dresser's works I have seen none of his designed with a domed lid. As this is hallmarked for 1883, this company was very quick off the mark producing something that looked like something he designed.

Regardless of anything else it's a lovely claret jug and with its more organic shape is like Art Nouveau but is too early for that.

Reference: Miller's Glass Antiques Checklist, Mark West, page 121

Height: 9 inches

Width: 5.5 inches

This is an Art Nouveau claret Jug with a waisted body with blobs with trails cascading down from the shoulders. It has silver plate fittings incorporating a looped handle, domed pouring lip and a hinged flip-top lid. It has a silver plate mark of a cupid for John Grinsell and Sons archer, circa 1890-1910.

These blobs with trails are a classic English Art Nouveau feature that you see variatons of by various glass makers. The glass most likely by Stuart & Sons as they were the most prolific user of this motif.

Height: 9 inches

Width: 4.5 inches

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